STATEMENT ON THE ARREST OF AMOS YEE

image

April 21, 2015

For Immediate Release

STATEMENT ON THE ARREST OF AMOS YEE

We would like to express our deep disappointment over the recent arrest of Amos Yee.

Singapore is an advanced and prosperous nation. We boast a highly-educated, literate and resilient population. We should allow space for people to express diverse opinions, and, if offended, engage in robust and civilized debate, without turning to the police or other legal avenues when disagreements arise.

And yet, for uploading a YouTube video deemed offensive by some, 16-year-old Amos Yee has been charged with harassment, and with deliberately wounding religious feelings. For posting a rude drawing featuring two politicians, Yee is accused of distributing obscene material.

In his video, Yee makes comments that some deem offensive to the Christian community.

However, we would like to bring your attention to a petition, started by a Singaporean Christian. It says: “As ugly as Amos Yee’s words were, we forgive because Jesus loved us despite our own fallen spiritual state.”

The petition has 3000 signatures so far and can be found here: https://www.change.org/p/the-government-of-singapore-release-amos-yee

In addition, Singapore is a signatory to the United Nations Convention for the Rights of the Child (CRC), in which children—those under the age of eighteen—require particular safeguards and protections. Article 3 of the convention emphasizes that “[i]n all actions concerning children, whether undertaken by public or private social welfare institutions, courts of law, administrative authorities or legislative bodies, the best interests of the child shall be a primary consideration”.

In instances when a child has been accused of infringing the law, Article 40 states that the child has to “be treated in a manner consistent with the promotion of the child’s sense of dignity and worth”. There is a need to take into account “the child’s age and the desirability of promoting the child’s reintegration and the child’s assuming a constructive role in society”. We note that when Amos was arrested, he was handcuffed in front of his parents and grandparents, and was detained by the police for two days. The mainstream media also wrongly reported that his mother had made a police report against him when no such thing happened.

The convention further advocates alternative measures for dealing with such children, without resorting to judicial proceedings. These measures include “[a] variety of dispositions, such as care, guidance and supervision orders; counselling; probation; foster care; education and vocational training programmes and other alternatives to institutional care”; they should also be undertaken “in a manner appropriate to their well-being and proportionate both to their circumstances and the offence”.

Singapore’s prosecution of Amos Yee goes against the spirit of the Convention for the Rights of the Child (CRC).

Yee’s opinions about the late Lee Kuan Yew—no matter how offensive to admirers of the former Prime Minister—should be viewed as opinions of an individual. A mature society is one in which people engage each other in rational discourse, not one which resorts to punitive action to silence those with opinions deemed disagreeable.

We call on the government to drop the charges against Amos Yee. Measures taken against Yee are disproportionate and heavy-handed and violate the fundamental principles enshrined in the UN convention Singapore has signed. They do nothing to help Singapore evolve as a country. Instead of fostering tolerance, they encourage the policing of thought and speech. If we truly aspire to live up to the democratic ideals of our pledge, we need to find more progressive, compassionate ways of dealing with differences in opinion.

Signed:

Shelley Thio, Jolovan Wham, Terry Xu, Roy Ngerng, Rachel Zeng, Kirsten Han, Jennifer Teo, Woon Tien Wei, Jean Chong, Lynn Lee, Vincent Law, Martyn See

Community Action Network

The Community Action Network is a group of individuals and activists concerned about freedom of expression in Singapore. We came together because of Amos Yee’s case.  

Contact: communityactionnetworkSG@gmail.com

If you would also like to sign this statement, you can go to this link here:
https://www.change.org/p/the-singapore-government-drop-the-charges-against-amos-yee

Advertisements

51 comments

  1. True Justice

    It is a disgrace that PAP is attacking on ordinary citizens – some as young as only a teenager – just to stay in power. Shameful and disgraceful.

    • Fuckroy ngerng

      how is that so? just because pap policy does not benefit u, you have to keep finding trouble with them

    • jackfruit

      This guy insulted Christianity. It is in our law to punish people who do this to protect social/ religious harmony, so let the law take its course. There might be one or a few who doesn’t mind what he said, but there are also others who feel offended and want action to be taken so as not to set precedent.

      So how is it that the pap is attacking it’s own people ?

  2. Singapore Citizen Mr. Teo En Ming (Zhang Enming)

    Subtle Denial of Medical Treatment by the Singapore Government for Mr. Teo En Ming (Zhang Enming)

  3. Plim

    You can bail Amos out but you didn’t. Instead write letters which will surely be ignored. What a joke. Roy is just talk only.

    • jackfruit

      plim, remember roy’s plan is to again get others to bail amos. The same way he got public funds to help him with the defamation case that he purposely created himself.

  4. CRIMOND G

    Certainly during the last 120 years where news is widely read and known, Christians have been at the forefront of campaigns and activities against all forms of injustice and actively involved it in all sorts of ways including feeding the poor and starving, taking care of the sick and dying, rescuing the helpless, caring for families of left in terrible circumstances by the imprisonment of breadwinners….(just or unjust), or killed in various ways, visiting prisoners, the persecuted etc etc. Their Christian faith compels them to. Sure, there are a few *BAD SHEEP*(politically acceptable rather than *black sheep) * among them just like in all communities, faiths as well as ….YES in the Government. So, for this rather rash young man Amos Yee to speak about Christians in obscene terms & in his , cocky & arrogant style he proudly displays, the very ones who would show any compassion (if it came to the crunch) towards him and his cause, would be the Christians. He should be ashamed of himself. Given sufficient time, his brain and intelligence will develop and hopefully he will apologise for his childish and juvenile outburst to those of us he offended……..Christians ! In Saudi Arabia or Iran, he would have not have been allowed this outburst a second time ! It would have been literally………Off with his head ! Allen NZ

    • TheClueless

      The irony is…In the final analysis, your God condemns Christianity. Why? Not for the good but yet, your good shuts the door to the promise land….

       Matthew 23:13
      13 But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you shut the kingdom of heaven in men’s faces; for you neither enter yourselves, nor do you allow those who are about to go in to do so.

      And for living in Sin…

      Matthew 23:15
      Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you travel over sea and land to make a single proselyte, and when he becomes one [a proselyte], you make him doubly as much a child of hell (Gehenna) as you are.

    • lea xian loon

      Ha! ha.

      Like your video to a PINKY PM. You should post it in more places

      You have said what needed to be said for a long time now.

  5. Amos yee

    Funny. Roy is all bullshit, you said you support me, in the end you don’t even donate any cent on my account. Just admit it, you’re just using my name to gain popularity is it ? Funny loser

    P.s : thanks to the only person who wholeheartedly bail me out, i could not express my gratitude in words. I will not repeat my action in the future

    • Suspicious

      You are supposed to be in a prison cell, ‘Amos’ or whoever you are. The real Amos Yee right now is barred from using the Internet!

  6. HaHaHa

    Even though Amos yee is 16, he held his beliefs strong, he did not submit and admit that his words were wrong because IMO, he is not. He did not back away or run away from his charges. He took it like a real man with a backbone when facing so much diversity. His own parents refused to bail or support him, half the population are cursing him, handcuffed and legcuffed to the courts, mass media shaming him, etc… Imagine, standing strong against all these at the age of 16.

    I bet the many “adults” who scorned and verbally abused him or thinks he need conselling went back to their working desk at 8am bowing like a spineless dog to their bosses or clients just to survive the day or month.

  7. ThreeStooges?

    9. We would state categorically that we – the Defence Counsel – disapprove of what Amos Yee has posted.

    10. In relation to the specific duties we will undertake, we will be doing the following for Amos Yee –

    (a) To advise him on the conditions on bail and to undertake a review of the bail and its conditions that have been imposed on him;
    (b) To advise him on the procedural laws pertaining to the criminal justice system and the substantive laws pertaining to the 3 charges levied against him;
    (c) To advise him on the most appropriate course of action – be it pleading guilty or claiming trial – bearing in mind that it is the right of the accused person to claim trial and have the prosecution prove its case;
    (d) To advise him on the sentencing options including those that specifically deal with young offenders.

    11. We will uphold the ideals set out herein through our conduct of the defence.

    • StupidParents

      So you think the three monkeys gonna bend Amos cock? I heard the boy is autistic? Maybe push him to commit sucide? What do you think?

  8. WhatDoYouThink

    The right to “subject each others’ fundamental beliefs to criticism” is the bedrock of an open, diverse society, and the basis of promoting justice and liberties in such societies. Once we give up such a right we constrain our ability to challenge those in power, and therefore to challenge injustice.

    The question we should ask ourselves, therefore, is not “should religious and cultural sensibilities ever limit free expression?” It is, rather, “should we ever allow religious and cultural sensibilities to limit our ability to challenge power and authority?”

    • IDontThink

      That’s how you perpetuate RELGIOUS DEATH on the masses and stay in power isn’t it? To commit injustice to maintain justice for all? Whose crack this came from that the people with open mouth swallow hook,line and sinker?

      • Bodoh

        Maybe the leaders idea of paradise is to have at least 60% of sheep who will open their mouth and ..beh beh beh only…eat grass and shit white gold

        If you use carrot and baton can at least maintain 60% if not higher….what do you think?

  9. new PAP supporter

    it is a fine line between being a public nuisance and having your freedom of speech…….

    Think about it if Amos Yee goes unpunished and we allow such public discontent, everyone will come out and insult everyone’s religion, insult every politician in power and get away with it . Come on. we are a nation of 3 million native Singaporeans if every monkey wants to be an INDIAN CHIEF and thinks that his individual rights is more important than the collective rights of society then we will not have a Singapore in 20 years time. I am not Pro PAP but I think some public order should be in place and certain lines cannot be crossed.

    I am a parent myself if this episode AMos yee gets away with it , what msg are we telling him?? You can get away with anything because we believe in human rights??? If he goes to Army he will insult his officer and thinks that he is above the law. Come on the army is based on regimentation be it whether we believe someone is capable to lead, then the whole institution will crumble. Everyone will just walk away from the duties and go CANTEEN break.

    There was a time I USED to believe that opposition voices stood for something they believe strongly in making ordinary Singaporeans heard and our lives better but now I think they are just doing it for the limelight because it is just FASHIONABLE to be a REBEL. Everyone likes a story where a small boy beats a huge monster when the odds are so against him. Just like AMOS yee in this case against the bad evil PAP or government.

    I am a patriot and I hope my country does well now and in the future. Votes are cast based on reason and what best for this country. For the record I have never voted for the PAP but the next GE I probably will because I feel the majority that supports the opposition just do it for the sake of being “cool” , non conformist bad boy. Grow up guys. Policies are there to make the lives of MAJORITY singaporeans better . You really cannot please everyone . For every policy there will definitely be some clown that will disagree and the people who agree . The people who disagree usually the hardcore anti PAP will disagree with every freaking policy from CPF to housing to national service , COE prices……I also dont know how they come up with so many disagreements.
    So if the opposition get into power , we abolish national service? no more CPF? COE at 1 dollar.
    The worst thing is these anti PAP guys will insult those who agree with PAP policies even though they never voted for them calling them PAPPY DOGS , die you PAP scum. Seriously grow up guys. We disagree because we love our country and our fellow singaporeans. Just don’t blindly disagree because of a political party. PAP runs Singapore but they don’t own Singapore. Until the opposition and opposition supporters grow up and mature, I am voting the PAP. Scary to let the country run by these clowns .

  10. lea xian loon

    PM Lee and Family

    Some of us know that they are supposed to feel sad at the passing of MM Lee.

    In any event, now that MM Lee is dead, can you return our parents’ CPF monies to them, that your father has coerced them to “contribute” over the years when your father was alive?

    We know it’s a fact that a significant portion of our CPF monies have been lost in wasted investment through you and Ho Ching via Temasek Holdings. But we will be thankful if you still can return whatever is left back to us.

    We promise not to apply for summary judgement against your family in the abovementioned extortion, as well as other atrocities your family has enacted upon your fellow Singaporeans, including acts through Internal Security Department. It is now common knowledge that you jailed a lady from our pioneer generation, before she has an opportunity to step into her election-won Havelock zone then, without trial for 6 years. Is that how you intend to celebrate SG50 too?

    We’ll leave your family’s reputation and judgement to the international civilized community, who is not under any vested interest to or threat under your shriveling political reach, which has now decomposed further with Mm Lee’s death.

    Return CPF to our pioneer generations in this year of SG50. Save all your rhetorical Machiavellian policies propagated through your state-controlled media, to spare further local and international squirming embarassment to Singaporeans, if not for yourself, please.

    Afterall, it is the living who needs and can spend money, not the dead.

    If you are willing to return all our CPF money back to us who have reached 65 (don’t push back the age again), we’ll burn your father some hell money. Deal?

  11. Basket

    Fark lah you stupid Singaporeans lol. A morsel of bread is better than unending supply of milk and honey? Go and die lah…

  12. R

    Roy you said “we would like to bring your attention to a petition, started by a Singaporean Christian. It says: “As ugly as Amos Yee’s words were, we forgive because Jesus loved us despite our own fallen spiritual state.”

    When a person forgives another person, it must be that person has committed a offense. So question is whether Amos has state something that is offensive and so there need to be forgiveness by A Christian counselor. Another principle is that the offense has to be acknowledge and a apology offered.
    So question is — is there an offense here.
    If there is an offense, then we said oh he is only a child or Christian ought to forgives because Jesus forgives us.
    Otherwise we said there is no offense.

    Conclusion : Amos has committed an offense from your statement because he needs to be forgiven.

    • Xmen

      Why are we playing with the words here? We all know Amos has not committed any crime. His speech is protected by the Singapore Constitution.

      • R

        Then why are people writing that he should be excused because he is child.
        Xmen you are very brave and foolish to say he has not committed any offense. But that is your view.

      • John Smith

        In Jabar bin Kadermastan v. Public Prosecutor (1995), CJ Yong ruled that: “Any law which provides for the deprivation of a person’s life or personal liberty, is valid and binding so long as it is validly passed by Parliament. The Court is not concerned with whether it is also fair, just and reasonable as well.”

        Concurring with this judgement, the High Court noted in Chee Siok Chin v. Minister for Home Affairs (2005) that the fundamental rights of freedom of speech and expression in Articles 14(1)(a) and (b) of the Constitution can be restricted by laws passed by Parliament. Article 14(2) includes a provision that Parliament may impose on the rights in Article 14(1) “such restrictions as it considers necessary or expedient” for various public interests.

        Protected? The rights afforded by the Constitution are not absolute – they are also subject to restrictions.

  13. THE SIXTEN

    we agreed with Xmen,
    R , PM put you full time her point at the people committed offences, what about your offences ?
    compare LKY did a lot of an illegal act., Amos just said something, who is the true offenses.

    宣傳李光耀過頭了, 把一批與他肩並肩戰友的功勞矮化了,抹殺了。國家媒體只有一種聲音, 把李光耀描繪成超人,這是對歷史極端的誤導。

    我們認為,李光耀把國家朝他們家族私有化控制做了悄悄的改變, 這是極其大的貪污嫌疑, 這導致當今的媒體, 水電費,電訊,淡馬錫, 幾乎重要國有資產不在新加坡人民的名義下啦 。換句話說, 以後新加坡的子孫都是在替他們打工。

    還有,從工人被解僱, 被起訴, 被勒索等行為發現李光耀沒有為新加坡建立工會保障制度。 什麼職總 ? 並沒有為工友出面打官司,職工幹什麼來的 ?

    因此,李光耀把招牌搭起來, 裡面根本沒有實質東西。李夫人是學法律的專才,在李光耀野蠻抓人的時候, 聽說李光耀最聽夫人的話,夫人有沒有做勸導 ? 夫人曾協助李光耀制定怎麼抓人去坐牢的法律,都沒有一個法律寫到怎麼保護到被抓人 ? 這是極為偏執的法律, 既然根本不是法律。

    在他們去世以後,整天利用已經被家族控制的媒體宣傳他們,所以有沒有採訪幾位受害者, 聽聽他們怎麼說 。

    如果被稱為國父的人真的有血有肉之軀,為什麼只留給自己的家人,並在遺囑中說,不讓外人進來 ?

    尤其在普遍平窮的時候,李光耀在國會開口為自己要價,他要的不是每月薪水只有國民的平均收入的 5 倍,而是他要每月拿花紅, 過大日子 。

    什麼時候新加坡的國會變成PAP為自己開口要好處的地方了 ?雖然國會的佈置是從英國國會抄搬過來的,但裡面的實質是李光耀最痛恨的共產黨的中央委員會。 他一邊抓共產黨人,一邊又享受共產黨一黨制度的獨霸, 又帶著民主招牌到處領獎, 掛羊頭賣狗肉,他都沾了便宜。

    現在的新加坡人喜歡報警,動不動就水火不容, 跟誰學的 ?

    我們最近再看了一遍國會的舊錄影帶, 只有一位林瑞蓮議員在呼籲, 為沒有錢保釋的人做出法律修改, 結果呢 ? 被PAP霸佔的國會沒有人理會。

    我們也認同不能將法律與金錢掛勾。

    現在有點忙,有空再聊。

  14. Social Issues Coming

    This is admitted by Goh Chok Tong himself recently. Many years back, LKY has already warned him not to open the flood gates, but overwhelmed with greed, he opened it. Social problems have already arrived and more will come in time to come. Someone will foot the bill. Singaporeans are not going to foot this bill. PAP will.

    When LKY asked for his house to be demolished after his death, he did not literally mean his physical house only. He meant PAP, the team that he has founded and built. During his last days, he witnessed the incapability of the current PAP team. He saw with disappointment the repeated breakdown of the public transport system and how useless it was for the Minister Lui Tuck Yew to fix the problem. He saw and knew how inferior and incapable his son was in managing the country as compared to him himself. He chose to die early than for him to see his empire – the house that he spent his entire life building- ruin to shackles. As a father, he did not reveal his thoughts publicly so as not to cause his son embarrassment and political votes.

    Don’t waste anymore of your resources in supporting the currently PAP. Instead, prepare yourself mentally for the inevitable change that is about to come- in a matter of time- a time that LKY himself has predicted. A change in government. A new Singapore. A new home for Singaporeans.

  15. amos is more mad than roy

    Roy has mental problem of delusion. Amos has a worse mental problem of anger. Both need medical attention.

  16. lea xian loon

    Pinky Lee is losing a fight with barely a ball dangling, after his case with Mr Roy Ngerng.

    Now to get back his face, this little princess in Pink is targeting someone much smaller like Amos

  17. Denis

    whether you host parties frequently, and the
    usage ‘ whether you would use just for heating food or baking or grilling.
    This article is not about saving tons of money on electrical energy or
    about transforming normal everyday boring food
    into gourmet gastronomical delights, it is more about dehydrating food with the inexhaustible energy source of the sun while
    using a solar sun oven. Whether you want to make it for yourself or someone else,
    making these rings is quite satisfying endeavor.

  18. Khaterehbook.ir

    The plain downside is its reaction to acidic and alkaline foods resulting in corrosion and spoiling
    the style of the food cooked. The soft Sure – Grip handles
    are much easier on your hands than hard plastic or wood
    handles, which makes a huge difference during a long day in the kitchen. and related items, keep visiting
    largest in india.

  19. Letha

    To help ease the task of a chef, a lot of companies realize that they need to make a different appliances types.
    “Check this out this review site: Bread Maker Reviews. Put the strawberries and pineapples into the blender or smoothie maker, Put in the ice cubes or the water and begin to blend slowly.

  20. Pingback: 意想不到的憤怒少年、始料未及的新加坡 | 公民行動影音紀錄資料庫
  21. Pingback: 意想不到的愤怒少年、始料未及的新加坡 | 新国志
  22. Pingback: 意想不到的憤怒少年、始料未及的新加坡 | My Blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s